INDEPENDENT NEWS

Porirua Grand Traverse invites all ages and abilities

Published: Thu 6 Dec 2018 03:24 PM
6 December 2018
Summer fitness goals don’t come much better than the Porirua Grand Traverse.
Established in 2006, the multi-faceted race around Porirua’s fabulous hills, forests, coastlines and waterways has become an annual highlight on the sporting and events calendar in the region.
The popular multisport event boasts something for weekend runners and walkers to skilled, endurance enthusiasts.
Event manager Michael Jacques says it is a great way for weekend warriors to have a focus for the summer, working off some of the Christmas mince pies.
“It can be as challenging as you want it to be – endurance athletes, those wanting to keep fit, and others just out for a social event with friends and family,” he said.
The next edition of the Porirua Grand Traverse is scheduled for Sunday 7 April.
Based at Whitireia Polytechnic campus, the traditional race involves a 10km kayak, 26km mountain bike and 18km mountain run, either solo or in a team, through spectacular scenery including Porirua Harbour, Rangituhi and Pikarere Farm.
In recent years organisers have also introduced races in each discipline for those who want to take part in just one of the disciplines.
There is also the popular Arena Fitness 9km Fun Run/Walk from Titahi Bay and through Whitireia Park, which is less challenging but perfect for families, schools and recreational runners.
The annual Schools Challenge is going strong, with prizes for the first boy and girl in school year categories, the fastest school team, and for the school with the most entrants.
“We get big school entries and we’d challenge any school to better the 60-strong Tawa Intermediate entry this year,” Jacques said.
Almost 900 people participated this year overall, with 400 of those in the fun run/walk.
While the event has attracted some of the country’s best athletes in previous years, including multisport world champions Richard and Elina Ussher, Jacques said it is a great community occasion first.
“We started this event to showcase Porirua’s awesome outdoors, and to get locals experiencing their own backyard more.”
Porirua City contributed $15,000 from the Major Events Investment Fund to support the Porirua Grand Traverse.
Mayor Mike Tana was fully behind it.
“It’s a well-organised event and it’s fantastic to see so many residents taking part, but equally as great to get so many visitors to come and enjoy our city,” he said.
Entries for the 2019 Porirua Grand Traverse are now open. For full information and online entry visit pgt.org.nz.
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